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Phoenix Descending (Curse of the Phoenix Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 300 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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|Age Level: 12 - 18|
|Grade Level: 9 - 12|
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Phoenix Descending is the first book in the Curse of the Phoenix fantasy series written by Dorothy Dreyer. The story tells about Tori, a girl who must infiltrate a strange queendom of Avarell in order to save her family members who are dying from a disease called phoenix fever. The story is a fast paced combination of fantasy, action and romance with a strong main character who does not expect others to do things for her but would rather take action into her own hands. I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it for YA fantasy fans, who don't like love triangles or insta love.
I really liked most of the characters in this book. I especially liked the lgtbq romance in it. I felt like the characters truly cared about each other and the relationship didn't feel like a forced effort of representation as lgtbq romances in YA fantasy sometimes tend to do. I also liked it that there was no love triangle or insta love. Tori didn't just go and fall head over heels with the first boy she met in Avarell. Neither did she forget her mission and go chasing after some guy putting herself and her mission at risk. She was smart and focused and took no unnecessary risks.
The only thing that bothered me a little was that at times I felt like Tori cleared her missions a little too easily. I would have liked her to struggle a bit more with her tasks. However, I did like it that she mostly relied on herself and didn't share her secret and true personality with anyone just because she happened to like a boy or befriend someone in Avarell.
One thing I really liked about this book was, how different the realms were from each other. We didn't learn about all the nine realms in this book but the ones we did learn about were all very different. I loved it how Drothidia seemed more like a village when compared to Avarell and the castles and markets there. I also wonder why the other realms had electricity and the cure for the phoenix fever but Drothidia did not. Maybe the people in Drothidia do not value science or maybe Drothidia is a poorer realm. I would love to learn more about the different realms.
Oh, and I loved the illustrations between chapters. Would love to read the next book when it comes out.
However, I was a little bit dissatisfied with the book for reasons like lacking details pertaining to world building. In spite of the Phoenix fever being the basic motivation for the story-line, I was a little disappointed that we never got a more detailed plot-line regarding the plague. There were also a few instances that felt much like plot-holes to me. (view spoiler) The problem probably is because there was just too many missions for Tori to accomplish within too little pages, so we never got the well-developed, juicy plot.
Because of the shortness, the world-building felt lacking to me. What do we know about the Phoenix fever? And The Undead? How did they originate? I wanted to know more about the Divine Mother and religion, the traditions of the Holy Priestess, and of the royal family. What about the use of electricity? Tori's herbology skills shows so much promise! These weren’t detailed enough for the readers to have a visualization of Tori’s world.
The characters in the book had a strong sense of justice and were easily loved. However, I didn’t find them having much individuality. The voices felt too similar. Although plot-driven, I feel the novel could have benefited a lot from its characters. Because there were many instances that I felt the characters made inconsistent choices for the sake of the plot.
I loved the LGBT couple of the novel and can’t wait to read more about what happens to our characters. I’m intrigued to know about the motivations of the antagonists and the ending, although predictable, has left me on the edge! Dorothy Dreyer is one author I’d say to keep a look out for.
Thank you to the author for providing me an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
This book was fantastic. There are phoenixes and undead, political intrigue and romance, and the universe is huge and diverse. Does any of that interest you? Then pick up this book. The story focuses on a handful of young people, but the main focus is on Bramwell and Tori. Bramwell is a loyal member of the Queens Guard of Avarell and Tori is a spy sent to infiltrate Avarell's court. These two, as well as most of the other characters the book follows, are good people who are finding themselves on opposing sides through no fault of their own. And when the action comes to a head, well, the story gets very interesting indeed.
I had a set time frame I wanted to read this book in, but I ended up devouring the last half because I just had to know how it would end. Here's what I will say about the ending: I am eagerly awaiting book two.
When I started this book I was afraid it would contain tropes and just be wildly confusing with all that was going on. After having finished it I can say, if there were tropes they did not take over the quality story line and, while the world is a bit large and complicated, the reader will settle into an understanding of it. Plus, the complexity means that there will be no shortage of story to write about in the following book(s).
I loved this book and if anything about the description strikes your fancy, you should check it out, too.
Most recent customer reviews
I loved this book. So intriguing and compelling. I could not put it down. The whole world was diverse and beautiful.Read more
Dorothy was really kind to sent me a ARC of this book.Read more